Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in case of In Re: Claim of Shirley L. Louk, No. B-183052-D.
L. Edward Glass, Glass, Glass and Dugas, for petitioner.
John T. Kupchinsky, Associate Counsel, with him Richard L. Cole, Jr., Chief Counsel, for respondent.
Judges Rogers, Williams, Jr. and Doyle, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Williams, Jr.
Shirley L. Louk (claimant), appeals from an order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (Board) denying him benefits for willful misconduct under Section 402(e) of the Unemployment Compensation Law (Law).*fn1
The claimant was employed by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (employer) as an equipment operator. On December 15, 1981, the claimant and two other persons were arrested at the employer's premises for attempting to steal gasoline from one of the employer's trucks. Consequently, he was discharged on December 26, 1979.
The claimant applied for unemployment benefits which were denied by a referee and by the Board.*fn2 The claimant appeals to this Court alleging that the referee's findings were based solely upon inadmissible hearsay and that the dismissal of criminal charges
against him should establish that his alleged conduct does not render him ineligible for benefits.
It is well established, that hearsay admitted without objection will be given its natural and probative effect and may support a finding of the Board if it is corroborated by any competent evidence in the record. Fritzo v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 59 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 268, 429 A.2d 1215 (1981). In the instant case, we must dismiss the claimant's contention that the Board's finding of willful misconduct is based solely upon inadmissible hearsay. Upon a review of the record, we conclude that the testimony of the arresting officer (EW in excerpt below), constitutes both corroborating*fn3 evidence for any hearsay that might have been admitted and competent evidence by itself upon which the Board could have based its finding of willful misconduct.
QR: You tell me exactly what you witnessed and what you saw ?
AEW: Certainly. I was on routine patrol, in civilian clothes as I am dressed now. I routinely check the cinder pile at Shellsburg because of previous incidents that have occurred there, as well as other cinder piles. I routinely checked this cinder pile that evening. As I proceeded up the driveway, the cinders are greyed, I, my headlights struck the vehicles that were parked up there. I observed Mr. Louk running from a PennDot truck, Chevy truck, equipment number 359-4081, Pennsylvania registration, PA 37 ...